Friday, October 28, 2011

Health issues and cooking

Well it looks like I had to finally give in and go to the doctor about my gall bladder. Good thing I went when I did.  I have been having a constant gallbladder attack for the past 2 weeks now. 

I go in on Monday for laprosocpic surgery to have it removed.  The doctor lectured me that I let it go way to long before seeking help.  3 years of attack after attack I should have consulted my doctor.   He threw out some numbers that were scary to me about the fact that I have left it go for so long. 

The biggest thing that is going to change is the way I cook, and eat.   I need to take care of my self and the people I love.   If one of those ways is making sure they are eating nutritional meals and taking care of my self at the same time then that is one step I can do.

I need to do a lot of learning on things I can and can't or shouldn't eat after this surgery.  Any suggestions or help is appreciated. 

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Major changes in my life

Many things have been changing in my life.  I had posted a previous post about having time for your family.  Well my family has changed.  I am in the process of a divorce and I am finding new things in my life!  I have discovered a new meaning behind the word "LOVE".  I am learning how a true friend will always love you.  That those true friends might actually be that "love" you needed. 

I am finally going to start re-blogging I need to start sharing my happiness in my life.  Things are really turning around in my life and its time i start showing and sharing it with the world again!   Keep checking back for future updates and creations... -  Those dreams are coming out again!  I will return!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Creamy tomato basil chicken and pasta

Creamy tomato basil chicken with pasta

2 LBS pounded flat chicken breasts lightly floured and sauteed salt and pepper when done
Allow to rest while sauce and pasta cook on back of stove where the heat stays. 

One small container of Philadelphia cooking cream original
1 pint of heavy cream
1 tbsp of minced garlic
10 fresh basil leafs
1 1/2 cup of cherub tomato (or grape, cherry )
fresh ground pepper
2tbsp of flour
3tbsp Olive oil
1/2 cup fresh grated parm cheese

add flour and oil to pan then place on heat after it is combined add garlic  add parm cheese and philadephia cooking cream combined, add in 1/2 of the heavy cream stir to combine add remainder of cream simmer while pasta cooks. just before you drain pasta add basil to sauce (you can shread basil or keep whole ) add fresh ground pepper
Campanile pasta, (Cook in salted water as directed) - Drain all but 1 cup of pasta water

Add 1 hand full of the  tomatoes sliced in half  to the pasta and remainder water.  and 1/4 cup olive oil and fresh ground sea salt.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

My Heritage - and a request for YOUR help!

My sister spent 2 weeks burning the midnight oil on working on extending our family tree branches back to its roots.  She was attempting to find Irish heritage since she was going to be taking a trip to Ireland.  Where she is right now!-  She did not have luck finding Irish blood in our tree.   She did how ever find that our family roots back in this town for many many generations.  More than likely we were one of the first settlers in the area.  Once she made it further she found most all of our heritage comes from Germany.  

This makes so much sense to me looking at the style of cooking my grandmother had.    The home made noodles that remind me that of the German's spaetzle.

All of these things coming in to play I have decided to get my hands on a GOOD German cook book.  When I do get my hands on one that seems authentic that is actually in English ... (Even tho I took 3 years of German in school I'm not sure I could manage my way around a cook book)  I am going to cook and post many items from said cook book.

If anyone out there in blog land - knows of any REALLY good German cook books.  I would love names, suggestions, or even ideas.

Thank you for any help in advanced!!-

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Spring is just around the corner

This rainy morning has me longing for the dog days of summer.  You know.  Those days when the gardens are booming with vegetables.  Food sizzling on the grill.  I sure wish that the weather would calm down and give us some nice days.  I have big dreams for my garden this year.  I found these wonderful carrots at the farmers market last year.  They were all different colors.  It was amazing!  I loved them.  I am wanting to plant some of them.  The picture above has potatoes that were 4 different colors. That makes it so nice to the eye when you sit down to chicken and roasted potatoes and you don't have all off white food on the plate.

May the days of weather like this soon be behind us.  To the left of that little shed is where my Garden is.  Behind that shed rests my two Lilac bushes. -  Mind you this is not what it looks like outside.  Today the ground is flooded with water and is so saturated it is running like a river in my  yard

Oh you pretty flowers that grow along my road I can't wait to see you again! 

I know its to early for blooming flowers but I'm ready when they are.!!!!

Lets get growing !

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Gadgets and Toys Of a Cooking Mom

I have been compiling a list of wants, desires, and just things I would like to have.  I don't often buy things for my self.   I have never been raised to do the "I want this, I want that, give me give me give me. "   How ever I have things that would either make things in life just a little easier.  Perhaps encourage me to bake more, or things I bake might turn out a little better.  One of those items my work has recently compiled donations from fellow employee's and placed one in our break room.  I LOVE IT! I made my donation knowing I would use it.

I am pretty much the only person in my house that consumes coffee on a regular bases.  I would want to get the nice little pod you refill yourself.  I just think how nice would it be.. plop the pod in the maker press a button and caffeine ingestion commence.  I do think it would be better to just take on my caffeine like this - 
I think we should be able to drive  up to our local star bucks and order up one of these.

My other wish and desire is to have a kitchen aid stand mixer (and a bigger kitchen so i can store all of these wonderful things ).  I would like to have the pasta attachment that attaches to it. 

Now putting all of these items in a kitchen that say I design would be just wonderful but I live in reality and well like I said these are my dreams. 

Or even better something more like this one

Oh now I can't forget .  I do have this love for wine.  I enjoy a nice glass of wine with a wonderful dinner.  I enjoy it in the summer and fall as a great way to unwind the day.  This is my contribution to that lust for wine.
So when that day comes that I win the lotto and I am done giving to everyone else.. these are the things I want to get.  Oh and one last thing. 

If I have a endless supply of money I would get a cleaning service. 

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Having fun with google

So today I was just sitting reading my facebook and someone posted an address of a street in Pittsburgh with some instructions on using google maps.  So I look it up and follow the instructions , laughed then looked around.  Eventually I had to google what I was seeing there were so many CRAZY things on this one street.  Needless to say it was a set up.  Carnegie Mellon University fine arts student set up a big event to happen down a street that the "google mobile" was going down.  It was hilarious.  Being as I am located not far from Pittsburgh this meant a lot to me and amused me.  I honestly found so much humor in this ! I ask you to take a tour around this little street in Pittsburgh enjoy a laugh.   So just do as a friend of mine told me and google map Sampsonia Way, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania .  Take a stroll up and down the street investegate the side streets to especially at "firemensway "  Post gazett's news artcle about it

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Stuffed cabbage or Pigs in a blanket

Saturday or Sunday I was watching Foodnetwork Ina Garten's Barefoot Contessa.  She was making a traditional Jewish meal for her husband Jeffry.  When she said stuffed cabbage I nearly fell off the couch.  I hadn't had stuffed cabbage in YEARS!  She proceeds to tell and cook this "sweet and sour" style tomato sauce.  Her recipe
The more I would think about it the more I wanted it.  I knew my dear husband would have nothing to do with it.  It contained cabbage after all.  He refuses to eat cooked cabbage in most forms.  (only kind I have ever seen him consume was in Chinese foods when I don't think he realized what it was.)  When I was a child my mom would make these things called porcupine balls (the filling that went in to stuffed cabbage with out the cabbage) So it hit me.  I will make stuffed cabbage and I will make a separate container for Mike of just the meat.

All day today at work all I could think of was eating this meal.  I honestly must have said it 100 times at work today "I can't wait for dinner tonight" . 

So-  I am not one to read a recipe ... So I recalled the jist of the recipe.  (see above for her recipe) I knew I didn't have the red wine vinegar but I have many other kinds.  I decided to use Rice wine vinegar. -

I prepped my ingrediants for the sauce , I used my Immersion blender  with the mini chopper attachment to fine mince onion and carrot.  for in the meat mixture.   That was very handy.

This is what Mikes turned out like.   Not nearly as yummy looking as mine but- 

I made home made escalloped potatoes to go with. 

Let me get you a napkin. I'm sure you are drooling too!

This meal made me very happy.  The only thing that would have made it better is if everyone in the family would have loved them as much as me.  I guess its the cabbage that gets them. 

I have one container with potatoes and stuffed cabbage to take to work later in the week.  I have 3 leftover containers of just stuffed cabbage. I have already had one request for some.   mmmm This was so yummy.

Here is the list of ingredients I used to make mine. 

3 large carrots fine minced (with a processor ) 2 for in the filling 1 for the sauce
1 large onion (1/2 fine minced like the carrot 1/2 just diced)
2 lbs of ground beef
2 cups of long grain rice (not minute or instant)
2 large cans of diced tomatoes
3tbsp rice wine vinegar
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 large jars or cans of spaghetti sauce or 4 cups of a home made sauce)
2 tsp garlic minced
one head of cabbage.

salt n pepper

I will not give step by step how to make this.  If you need more instructions please read Ina's recipe.  I  will tell you that I mixed 2 of the minced carrots and the minced onions with the rice and 1 can of diced tomatoes with the ground beef.  I saute' the diced onion and remainder carrot  with a tbsp of oil till they are caramelized I then add the brown sugar and vinegar and diced tomatoes and boil rapidly to reduce moisture.  Meanwhile I had already cooked the head of cabbage for apx 10 -15 min to loosen the leafs.  I started rolling the cabbage with meat waiting on sauce to reduce then placed them in casserole dishes topping with sauce.  I baked them for 1.5 hours  

Monday, January 31, 2011

A Cooking Mission or Project

Every time I watch Julia and Julie it makes me want to set forth on a project of my own.  I get so bored with cook books.  Either not enough pictures, many recipes I couldnt attempt to feed my family, or ingrediants that would drive my food budget through the roof.  I want to do SOMETHING! I love to cook, I love to learn new dishes, techniques.  I love taking pictures of my food. 

I own so many cook books.  None of them pull at my heart enough to attempt any mission as large as that in Julia and Julie.   I am seriously in need of suggestion.  Do you know of a small cook book.  One that the ingredients will not break the bank?  I am sure I will be running over this in my head all night tonight.  I wish there wasn't a storm upon us.  I would go to a book store and look at the cook books.

Please Help!

Monday, January 24, 2011


I had looked at many taquito recipes after googling that very phrase.  Told myself oh this would be hard to make.  Then it hit me.  Food processor! I was correct. I thought these were fantastic and easy! just one of those repetitive dishes where you repeat the same steps over and over again rolling till i almost ran out of pans. 


1-1.5 lbs of boneless skinless chicken breast
1/4th cup buffalo chicken style hot sauce. (red hot brand)
1 package of cream cheese
3 cups of 4 cheese blend (mexican style)
1/2 tsp or enough to lightly season chicken    of cumin
2 packages of flour tortillas (Tortillas cut in 1/2)
1-4 cup salsa
1 small onion,
1 small green pepper
salt and pepper to taste

saute seasoned chicken (with cumin, salt and pepper) and peppers in a large skillet over medium heat till cooked to temp.  allow to cool slightly.
put chicken and peppers in a food processor and pulse till fine mince.  Remove mixture place in to a bowl
place hot sauce, and cream cheese and salsa in food processor and pulse till cheese is completely incorporated with hot sauce
Add shredded cheese, pulse till cheese mixture is combine.
Remove cheese and start slowly stirring together with chicken.

On each tortilla that has been cut in 1/2 on the cut end of tortilla place 2tbsp (apx) of mixture and spread evenly from one end to the other.  Roll tortilla and place in a lightly greased pan so it will not unroll.
repeat till all mixture is used.  Bake in oven at 375 for 15 min

(I have always  seen different blogs that someone has made home made taquitos. I thought they would be very laborious .  I said to my self I'm going to attempt to make them A cheap and yummy snack, or appetizer.  Make it your own tweak it as you may... Let me know how you change it!)

I wish I would have more pictures then just the few that are left over that I put in the fridge.  I will make these again soon. Perhaps next time I make them I will use some fine shredded beef in some of them. I thought these were so easy to make.  Food processor helped that along so much.   I tweaked my written recipe a little different from how i made it.  I found mine to need more spice.  I had only added apx 3 table spoons of hot sauce, it needed more of a kick.  I didn't add salsa to mine but next time I will.  I ended up with 32 or so.  Perhaps I should make these for Superbowl Sunday! Lets go Steelers!!!!!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

"Eat Pray Love"

This is not going to be so much a spoiler. It will more just be my expression of how much i enjoyed this movie.  This movie is touching in so many ways.  It is a great movie to help one connect to them self.  It helps you find "peace" with yourself.. 

I have often wanted to travel the world. -  I have always wanted to live with in the towns, not as a tourist but as someone whom knew and understood the way each culture lived.  Dreamed and behaved.  Many couples do not know how to dream together-  .  This movie is set to help people develop them self ... I feel like I need to watch it again... I would love to read the book perhaps it will envelope my head with more things that will make me restless .  Eat pray love was a very good movie...